In 2005, the GDP of the emerging economies of the world accounted for more than 50% of the total world’s GDP (measured at purchasing power parity). This means that the rich countries (i.e., United States, the European Union, Japan) no longer control the world economy. When combined with the impact of digital technologies, this continuing shift in economic power means that the printing industry is increasingly focusing on emerging markets seeking opportunities and profits. This exploratory study focuses on five of the largest emerging markets: China, India, Russia, Brazil, and Mexico. The study includes two phases. Phase one involves gathering public and industry macro- and micro-economic data in each of these emerging market countries. Phase two involved interviewing local printing experts in each country. In addition to individual country industry profiles the study looks at several common challenges facing the printing industry in all five countries. These include overcapacity of aging production facilities, fierce price competition for basic commodity products and services, the impact of the Internet on print media consumption, monetary and taxation policies, national industrial and international trade strategies, and changes in educational policies and literacy rates. Comparisons among the five countries result in a number of interesting observations. For example, it is clear that tariff and tax policies in each country strongly influence the rate of development of the globalizing part of the industry. These observations combined with macroeconomic and industry-specific data from each country have led the researchers to a better understanding of how these countries will likely participate in the emerging global print communications industry. In each of these five countries there are two distinct segments of the printing industry. First, the old indigenous industry that serves traditional domestic markets with products and services that often is price-driven and usually falls short of meeting the needs of domestic companies seeking export business or of multinational corporations doing business domestically. And second, an emerging industry that provides value-intense and world class manufactured goods and services. These include products such as the leading national newspapers manufactured in India, packaging materials manufactured in Mexico, and high-end books manufactured in China.

Publication Date


Document Type

Full-Length Book

Department, Program, or Center

Printing Industry Center (CIAS)


RIT – Main Campus